The Carson School is a public school on the West Side of Cincinnati for preschool through 6th grade students in the Cincinnati Public Schools district. It’s led by principal Terrez Thomas, who’s focused on his students, families, and team, and creating a great environment for all through listening. Carson School families already receive Pulse Checks like other CPS parents. So, earlier this year, when Carson employees completed an external survey outlining focus areas, Principal Thomas set his sights on measuring strategic goals through ongoing Staff Pulse Checks.
Read our Q&A with Principal Thomas to learn how you can use Pulse Checks to measure your team’s goals too!
How are you measuring strategic goals, objectives, and growth areas through Pulse Checks?
After the initial staff survey, we had two areas that we made focus areas: materials and being recognized. We use the Possip Bonus Question (BQ) on a biweekly basis to see, as an administrative team, if our staff feel recognized and have the materials they need. [After we know what they need], we try to get the materials.
[Pulse Checks are] a good tool to get diverse voices, quick data, and analytics. I just love what the Possip team [does]. I’ve never had a team analyze the data in such a convenient way as an administrator. It’s very convenient to have quick, actionable items [for follow up].
What has been the impact of Possip? Are there any unintentional benefits to staff culture and communications?
The ability for staff to respond anonymously helps me get a good read on what’s going on. It also creates an outlet for staff to have issues resolved. It’s a safe space for staff. In our newsletters, I write about our trends, data, and response. People feel heard and that helps get good participation week after week.
What’s your advice to other Possip partners interested in launching a similar effort?
- Think about growth areas. As a team, we brainstormed how we would address our growth areas. Possip fills in as a measurement tool. Possip is also a good perception data point to determine if we are making progress in the right way. It’s a good measurement tool to get staff perception on data.
2. Let your team know about Pulse Checks in advance. Caitlin from the Possip CX team prepared a launch powerpoint, which included an overview of the platform. I connected it to the areas that we would like to see growth in as a school.
3. Ask for honesty. I asked my team to provide honest feedback, and made sure to include how to reply to Pulse Checks anonymously within the slide deck.
4. Let staff know who will read their responses. I let the staff know that it was only coming to me, so they could trust that the feedback was not going across the system. We promoted Pulse Checks and continue to include info on them in a biweekly newsletter to keep progress front and center.
Carson is a great community: we strive to be a very engaging community, we have great staff members, and we really value the staff experience. Our business is educational outcomes, but Possip has been a good tool, so that in the midst of the pandemic, we’ve been able to support staff.
Special thanks to Principal Thomas for the interview! Read more Possip partner spotlights here.